lifestyle / motoring / 22/07/2013

Likes and Dislikes: Ford Kuga

fordlogoI drove the Ford Kuga for a week recently and I’ve put together a list of my likes and dislikes.

The Kuga was launched in South Africa in April this year, and pricing starts at R289 000 for the 1.6 EcoBoost Ambiente FWD, the standard one without extras.

The model I drove was the Kuga 2.0 TDCi Trend Powershift AWD, and is priced at R384 900. You just know you’re driving a Diesel by the sound of it.

I’m more of a small car person so driving the Kuga was quite a change for me. Although I managed better than I thought I would, and forgot all about its size once I sat in it.

ford-kuga

WHAT I LIKED:

> The leather seats were very comfortable. It felt like I was sitting on a lounge suite.
> Even though I drove an automatic, I had the option to manually override that and decide what gear I wanted to drive in.
> The drive overall is smooth. I got used to it very quickly!
> Driving over speed bumps – a completely different experience in my own car.
> The beeping sounds when you’re reversing so you know how far you can go. 

ford-collage> The Sony sound system.
> Cup holders that actually work and you won’t spill by mistake (yes, I used it at times to store stuff, as you can see in the pic above).
> Ford SYNC – linking your phone to the car via Bluetooth is easier than you think. Using voice commands to skip or pause a track.
> The boot is huge, you can’t really run out of space even if you’re going on a massive shopping spree.
> Electric mirrors – anything that makes my life easy.
> Lots of leg room in the front, most noticeable if you’re in the passenger seat.
> The trip computer gives you a quick summary of how many kms left on the tank, distance covered & fuel consumption.

kuga-steering-wheel
WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE:

> Even though I’ve driven a keyless car before, I’m embarrassed to admit it took a while to switch on the car initially (apart from pressing the start button, forgot to put my foot on the brake).
> There are quite a lot of buttons to deal with, it can get a bit overwhelming.
> Sometimes it couldn’t pick up the contact I wanted to dial.
> The position of the USB, inside the arm rest between the seats.
> Steering wheel was a bit too big.
> Not a big deal, but the colour of the Kuga.

Even though Ford has Park Assist to help you parallel park, I did not test this feature because I know how to park 😛 Remember Ford’s automatic tailgate system ‘Open Sesame’ where you wave your foot beneath the rear bumper and it opens? Here’s a video of me trying it out in Taipei at Computex:

Surprisingly, I enjoyed driving the Kuga for a week. A lot of small cars just moved out of my way – I must say I haven’t experienced that before! I got used to its luxury, forgot how big it actually is, and that it’s a “mommy car”; I wished it didn’t have to go back. Ford SYNC remains the best infotainment system I’ve used in a car to date. Read my hands-on with it here



Nafisa Akabor
Always online... except when I'm offline.




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  • davegreenway

    Yay for computex 🙂

  • Juanita van Heerden

    I also drove a Kuga the other day. I really like the car. On a practical side, it is really easy to get in and out of this car (with stiletto heals on). I also like the little button you press for the tailgate to close itself.

    What bothered me was the large front window. It feels as if you are driving in 3 lanes at once. The position of the air vents are also a bit strange. All things you will get used to with time, I guess.

    I will definitely put this car on my short-list for cars I will buy.

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